‘I was horrified’: Club’s zero tolerance approach to insults
HAVING the courage to tackle gender based insults on and off the soccer pitch is a quality Eureka Football Club has in spades.
On Saturday, Eureka FC will hold a fundraising and awareness raising event to help prevent violence against women through sport.
Club president Simon Pearce said the day was partly inspired by the horrific domestic violence murder of Hannah Clarke and her children by her estranged husband, while another catalyst was after he heard younger players berating each other during a game.
"Like a lot of people I was horrified by this and my wife works in the field and is in the front line, so at game in the summer youth league there was an incident with a bit of testosterone and there were lots of gender based insults," he said.
"We decided we had to cut this language out and sporting clubs have a big role to play in ensuring senior players are good role models for younger ones coming through.
"Since Eureka FC commenced all their senior men's home games with a short explanation to both teams and requested no gender based insults during play, the response has been great.
"Some of our senior men will be running the event.
"Since we looked at the appalling statistic on domestic violence we decided we needed to step up and stop players making these kinds of comments because it is not okay to speak about girls and women in a derogatory manner.
"Sure, have banter on the field but don't make it about gender, our more senior players when they hear will tell them 'this is not OK, don't be talking or thinking about women, your mum, your girlfriend like this'."
Pearce said the club is inviting all its players, officials and supporters to "step up".
"My expectations for people in the club is that they will step up," he said.
When I talk to young boys I tell them we have standards and this is one of them."
Pearce said research shows the influence older boys have on those younger is higher than any from their home environment.